A major blow has hit shoppers in Melbourne with the announcement from wholesale giant Costco confirming the closure of a major store.
Shoppers have described the announcement as a “real blow” for those who frequent the Docklands supermarket chain.
In July 2023, the membership-only retailer announced an Australian expansion when it acquired the Ardeer site, which was said to be opening in late 2024.
A regular customer at Docklands Costco was told by management the relocation was due to a rise in Melbourne’s City Council and state government expenses, making the stores operations “totally unaffordable.”
Shoppers who frequent Costco Docklands will have to travel a minimum of 22 minutes to the new store in Ardeer. Picture: Supplied.
“Costco at the extreme end of Docklands is preparing to vacate due to the increasing expenses due to Melbourne City Council and our state government,” the customer, Charlotte, told 3aw.
“Their outgoings apparently have gone up over 500 per cent in just over 10 years which has made it totally unaffordable,” she continued.
The Docklands Costco opened 15 years ago to enormous queues and was the first store from the US chain to reach Australian shores.
Customers have described the Docklands location as a “landmark” shopping experience which will now be turned into a “total graveyard there”.
ADELAIDE, AUSTRALIA – NewsWire Photos 3rd June 2021: Stock images of Costco, Kilburn, Adelaide. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Kelly Barnes
“You could park there, you could do your shopping before or after, you might go for a bite to eat,” Charlotte told 3aw.
Facebook group, Costco Marsden Park Community are among those disappointed in the closure.
“Sadly now as soon as August 2024, the Costco Docklands will permanently close”, wrote Sam Ey, Administrator of the group wrote on Facebook.
The update also fired up Reddit users appearing split on their thoughts about the stores closure.
“Selfishly this is terrible news, as this means more people at my local Costco and it’s already packed most days of the week,” one Reddit user wrote.
“This makes me sad. I don’t want to go for Ardeer Epping or Ringwood. I like the Docklands location,” wrote another.
Docklands was hit hard during the Melbourne lockdowns, due to the area being occupied largely by corporate offices. Picture: Facebook.
Costco Country Manager Chris Tingman wrote in a statement that the company looks forward to sharing relocation progress with their members and updates will be shared via social media and the Costco websites.
“Costco is very excited to be a part of the wider Melbourne West community; we feel it is the perfect location for offering more convenience for our rapidly expanding membership base,” he said.
It is yet to be confirmed when the store will officially close its doors.